GM enables drivers to order espressos, pancakes from the road

Cesar Mills
December 7, 2017

In-car infotainment systems are becoming ever more advanced, and with the addition of Wi-Fi and LTE functionality comes the sort of features that were once restricted to smartphones. "Leveraging connectivity and our unique data capabilities, we have an opportunity to make every trip more productive and give our customers time back."GM says Marketplace uses machine learning from drivers' digital relationships with merchants and real-time information such as location, time of day and more, to offer "highly personalized experiences".

General Motors is launching Marketplace, a platform that will allow drivers to shop for goods and services from Starbucks, Dunkin' Donuts, and other businesses while driving. On Tuesday, the automaker announced GM Marketplace, a commerce platform for on-demand reservations and purchases run through your infortainment system, and it's coming to new and existing 2017 and 2018 model year GM vehicles.

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Marketplace which was developed with IBM, will be immediately uploaded to about 1.9 million model-year 2017 and later vehicles, Reuters reported. But this ease of use may lead to people getting distracted while making transactions through Marketplace that they might not have otherwise made through their phone, resorting to the ancient method of waiting to arrive at their destinations instead. All U.S. states have some form of law against smartphone usage while operating a vehicle, but an estimated 660,000 drivers use cell phones at any given time during the day, according to the National Highway Safety Administration. They can also make a restaurant reservation or even buy chicken wings. Dunkin Donuts, Applebee's, TGI Fridays and IHOP are set to be featured alongside a list of other food options.

GM says no customer data will be shared with vendors with the customer's consent.

Drivers or passengers can select the Marketplace icon through the vehicle's infotainment system to select food, fuel info, and more with just a few swift taps on the screen. Vijay Iyer, a GM spokesman, told Bloomberg the service complies with voluntary driver-distraction guidelines that many automakers have agreed on. The apps also have limits to how many steps a user must complete to place an order, typically three to four, he said. Stay up to date with all the local news, weather and sports as well as live newscasts and events as they happen.

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